For youth living in Washington DC, summers are filled with local traditions and rites of passage. One specific rite of passage is the Mayor Marion S. Barry’s Summer Youth Employment Program. A locally funded initiative sponsored by the Department of Employment Services (DOES) that provides District youth ages 14 to 24 with enriching and constructive summer work experiences through subsidized placements in the private and government sectors.
The City Kids SYEP program includes JET, Elite, and Leadership participants. Youth are engaged in six consecutive weeks of virtual programming and local excursions led by our Summer SYEP Coordinator and City Kid’s alumnus, Chris Allen.
Chris has developed a fun-filled curriculum that engages and challenges CK youth on several levels. SYEP started the first week of July with the focus of the week being Black Entrepreneurship. Participants had the unique experience to interview the founder of Moechella DC and learn about other local businesses. The curriculum for the second week focused on the history of Public Lands and included a trip to Anacostia Park and the Community Museum where kids learned about the history of the area and had a blast roller skating in the park.
The other weeks of SYEP will focus on mindfulness & wellness and how to incorporate them into our everyday lives, STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math”, creating art that speaks to who they are, what they value, and how they interact with the world, and #CKOLYMPICS where they will celebrate with fun games and outdoor challenges!
Chris has developed a great program filled with joy, fun, education, and as with all City Kids programs, a sense of community and support.